The art of forgetting*
Obviously I no longer occupy my time with the study of literature.
I do nothing at all with all of that today; but I lose and find the bits and bobs every day. I forget. I hunt for fragments of things I used to know:
"this existence, this
botched, cumbersome, much-mended,
not unsatisfactory thing"
Reading always reminds me of how much I love life. Have any of you by any chance read Orwell's essays? You should, really - Orwell had a astounding talent for sincerety, gut instinct for ethics.
"The essence of being human is that one does not seek perfection, that one is sometimes willing to commit sins for the sake of loyalty, that one does not push asceticism to the point where it makes friendly intercourse impossible, and that one is prepared in the end to be defeated and broken up by life, which is the inevitable price of fastening one's love upon other human individuals."
Reading reminds me, somewhat strangely, that I do live, that I do have a mind for thinking.
Oh nothing very serious. Nothing very complicated. Reminders of what I already knew and need to know again now.
The study of literature is so wrongheaded sometimes, so stupidly in transgression of its privileges as readers. Of course anyone who makes a living from it is bound to forget how to be a reader only. Digging is not a necessary - all I have to do is listen. My much-beloved discipline is superfluous, literature need not be studied, only read. The writers have done the digging -
"Between my finger and my thumb
The squat pen rests.
I'll dig with it."
I misinterpret Seamus Heaney of course.
Also I simplify my own point of view. Academic literary analysis in necessary in the sense that the Church (any Church) is - it may be helpful, but at best it opens the door; and often it closes it. So do you go in?
But you don't even need the books sometimes. Today, this awful morning, gets worse until it gets better.
"Not because of victories
but for the common sunshine,
the largess of the spring."
Even in winter.
*Sorry for all the codswallop. I am all too lyrical today.